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General Posts

Your Key To Success: Stop Chasing It

Want to know one of the best kept secrets?

Here it is…
If You Want Success: Stop Chasing It.
It’s not running away from you. So, why is there this trend to connect the act of “chasing” to things like dreams, success and change?

Breakin’ It Down

First, let’s break down what “chasing” means…that something or someone is running away from you, like maybe your new puppy. Dreams, success and change don’t run anywhere, they’re intangible. Besides, “chasing after” something never guarantees a successful outcome.

Still, there’s this romantic metaphysical illusion we conjure up when we think about chasing something our soul desires. It makes us sound like we’re busy on some meaningful quest to better our lives. Advertising agencies have tapped into this angle to sell us all kinds of stuff from cars to health supplements. Well friends, I call bullshit! Don’t buy it.

Stop with the harsh truth, is there a fairy tale version?

The things most of us want in life don’t involve a chase. They involve having the guts to do hard work, thoughtful planning, some trial and error, sweat equity, persistence and fearless determination. Time tested factors still essential to blazing your trail and getting to that exalted pot o’ gold at the end of the rainbow. There it is.

So, don’t let yourself get suckered into believing that “chasing after” something is some relevant social or spiritual means to validate achieving what you want. You might find all you’re doing is chasing after your own tail.

General Posts, NICE

The Top 9 Benefits Of Being Nice vs. A Complete Jerk

Advatages of Being Nice-Farmhouse Soul blog post

Let’s Talk Nice. 

What happened to being nice? Lately there’s been an upsurge in degrading insults, pissed off rants and the absolute lack of respect or regard for any opinion that doesn’t mirror our own. And it’s not limited to political ideology, religion or social issues either. There is a stifling pervasive stench of nastiness. Intolerance and bullying are on the rise. To call it a pandemic might be an exaggeration. However, based on observations of posts and comments from various social and national media outlets, a fast growing number of folks think that “it’s OK to be mean”. Well, most of your mother’s would say “it’s not”. Somehow we need to regain our perspective on the bigger picture.

Reboot The Attitoot.

Here’s one suggestion. Let’s all take a big communal deep breath followed by a collective step back and regroup. Who can argue that showing compassion, respect and kindness toward your fellow human isn’t a good thing? But to be clear, being nice to others doesn’t mean being passive, weak or some kind of a cheap sunflower print doormat. Nice is about being understanding and empathetic yet assertive and strong. It’s about taking the stage while letting others bask in sharing the spotlight too. So, I’d like to offer up a few interesting but presently overlooked facts to the benefits of being NICE.

  1. Nice People Make More Money
    According to Professor Dacher Keltner, a scientist at the University of California-Berkeley, compassionate people, especially those who are able to read other people’s emotions and clearly communicate their own are not only healthier and happier, but also more popular, and even more successful at work. Turns out, nice people get more raises and promotions.
  2. When It Comes To Love, Nice People Are Luckier
    A study done at the University of Toronto found that people who are generally pleasant and friendly have one half the divorce rate of the general population.
  3. Nice People Are Healthier
    Ervin Staub, professor of psychology at the University of Massachusetts, found that nice people have fewer trips to the doctor. Also, a University of Michigan study found that older people who are charitable with their time have a 60 percent lower rate of pre-mature death than their selfish unhelpful peers (University of Michigan study). Live mean, die young. According to studies, everyone from the elderly to alcoholics saw their health improve if they did volunteer work.
  4. Showing Kindness Demonstrates Strength
    It is much more difficult to hold your tongue and speak supportively toward others, especially those who have wronged or mistreated you. Being kind is more challenging and more honorable.
  5. Nice People Spend Less Time in Court
    At the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, they found that doctors who have never been sued speak to their patients for an average of 3 minutes longer than physicians who have been sued twice or more. Just by being more empathetic, doctors might avoid malpractice suits altogether.
  6. Being Nice Feels Good
    Brain scans consistently show that acts of kindness register more like eating chocolate than, say, fulfilling an obligation. The same pleasure centers light up when we receive a gift as when we donate to charity. Neuroscientists sometimes refer to it as “the warm glow” effect.
  7. It’s The Right Thing To Do
    While being kind sometimes feels as though you are allowing meanness to go unnoticed or unchecked, it does not mean you’re allowing others to walk all over you. You are simply rising above in a different way.
  8. Being Mean Doesn’t Solve Anything.
    Being nice can diffuse a tense situation. It doesn’t matter if nothing is solved, at least you know you didn’t make it worse.
  9. Being Nice Makes Others Happy (and you too!)
    Maybe not right away, especially when the tip of your tongue is holding itself back from spewing your true feelings. At the end of the day, you can fall asleep easier knowing you didn’t say something you can’t take back.  You’ll have peace of mind reflecting back on how you offered kindness instead of unnecessary meanness.

    The Golden Rule Effect.

    The way you act towards others is a reflection on yourself. Your words or actions can last forever on others. Sometimes it doesn’t feel permanent to you, but to the other person, it could be everlasting. Surveys have shown people prefer to be known for being nice rather than a complete a**hole. It’s up to you. No doubt, some will say, “Yeah, well, I really don’t care what people think of me”. To those people I’d say… “This world is already difficult enough to navigate. So, pause and think the next time you’re about to unleash a slew of negativity, contempt, disdain or whatever else upon the rest of us . Go get some therapy, smoke some weed or somethin’ to fix the tude, dude. If you’re not gettin’ paid to be mean stop workin’ for free.” Yep, that’s what I’d say, if I could. Wait…I guess I just did.

General Posts

Farmhouse Soul’s Art & Designs on Society 6

Farmhouse Soul On Society 6

Open For Business!

Farmhouse Soul’s art & designs are on Society 6. What is Society 6 you ask? Well, for those of you who’ve never heard of it, let me enlighten you. Society 6 is a wonderful website that helps artists/designers promote and sell their work. Artists are able to have their original designs printed on a variety of products and sold from the designer’s own shop on the website.

Farmhouse Style and More

We’re incredibly excited to announce that our shop is finally open. Our focus is on art and design for everyone who loves farmhouse decorating, country, cottage and ranch styles. We use both original and *CC0 photo images that we digitally manipulate and enhance with effects and more. To take a look at a few of the fine art photographs and digital designs Farmhouse Soul is selling on Society 6, click here to take you to our page.

Because Quality Matters

We chose Society 6 to sell our designs. We researched various company’s products and printing process and were impressed with the quality Society 6 offers. If you click on the link at the bottom of this page it will take you directly to our shop page, there you can purchase Farmhouse Soul designs on a variety of products. We will be adding new photography and designs on a regular basis, so check in often and we hope you’ll find something you love! Thanks for your support.

*(Creative Commons Zero which means you can copy, modify, distribute and use the photos for free, including commercial purposes. They are in the public domain.)

 

To see our entire collection of art, photography and designs, click on the banner below to go directly to our shop.

Farmhouse Soul Designs on Society 6

If you have any questions please email us at farmhousesoul@gmail.com

From the Kitchen, General Posts

Thai Curry Vegetable Soup

 

I love all the foods served up at Christmas time. The week or two leading up to the big celebration though, I often find myself craving other tastes that won’t be on the holiday table. Recipes that are fairly healthy, simple to make and will last for a few days are my favorites, since I already have so much to do.

Thai Time

This recipe for Thai Curry Vegetable Soup fits my requirements perfectly. I’ve adapted the recipe just a bit to suit my own personal tastes from the original by Beth at  budgetbytes.com. Budget bytes is a fantastic food blog. The recipes are wonderful and she also gives you the cost breakdown. Mouth watering photos of the recipes will convince you to make them. I definitely recommend  checking out this blog, you won’t be disappointed. It’s one of my new favorites!

Turning Up The Heat

Other than chopping all the vegetables before hand, this soup goes together quickly and easily. For those of you that worry about Thai food being too spicy, this soup is pretty low on the heat scale. You can turn up the burn by offering Sriracha sauce along with the other garnishes when you serve it. If you want a heartier version of this soup you can put in some cooked, cut up chicken at the end just until it’s heated through. Shrimp would be great too, but add them at the end and simmer just a couple of minutes to cook through. Simmer just until the shrimp turn pink so they won’t be tough.

Recipe~Click here for a printer-friendly version of this recipe

THAI CURRY VEGETABLE SOUP

Serves: 4 (about 2 cups each)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Total time: 35 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

2 Tbsp. neutral cooking oil such as canola

3 cloves garlic-minced

1 Tbsp. fresh ginger root-peeled & finely grated or minced

2 1/2 Tbsp. Thai red curry paste (I use Asian Creations Thai Kitchen brand, which can be found at Albertsons and other major grocery stores)

1 small sweet potato(about 1 lb.)-peeled and cut into small cubes, about 1/2 to 1 inch

2 bunches baby bok choy-wash and chop into strips, separating the white stalks from the green leafy tops

1 cup chopped fresh baby spinach leaves ( I use the pre-washed bagged spinach)

4 cups vegetable or chicken broth

1 (13oz.) can coconut milk (I used Trader Joes reduced fat coconut milk)

1 Tbsp. fish sauce (I use Asian Creations Thai Kitchen brand, which can be found at Albertsons and other major grocery stores)

1/2 Tbsp. brown sugar

1 box Thai thin rice noodles (I use Asian Creations Thai Kitchen brand, which can be found at Albertsons and other major grocery stores)

GARNISHES:

4-5 green onions (scallions) chopped or 1/2 of a red onion thinly sliced

1 lime cut into quarters

l large handful of fresh cilantro (washed and roughly chopped)

Sriracha sauce to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

Prepare all of the vegetables for the soup and garnish. Mince garlic and grate the ginger using a fine holed grater or mince finely with a knife. Peel and cut up the sweet potato into 1/2 to 1 inch cubes. Cut up washed bok choy (slice end off of stem base and discard) into strips about 1 inch. Separate white stalk part from green leafy tops. Chop green onions into small pieces or if using red onion, slice thinly. Roughly chop the washed cilantro.Thai Curry Vegetable Soup-Chopped Vegetables

In a large soup pot heat the oil and add the garlic, ginger and red curry paste. Saute those ingredients over medium heat for 1-2 minutes.

Add the cubed sweet potato, chopped bok choy stalks (white part, save green part for later) and the vegetable or chicken stock to the pot. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5-7 minutes or until sweet potato is tender when tested with a fork.

While the soup is simmering, bring another pot of water to a boil for the rice noodles (cook according to package directions) or once water is boiling add noodles and remove pan from heat, stir noodles lightly with a fork to separate and let sit for 4 minutes stirring once or twice. Drain the noodles into a colander when time is up and set them aside.

When sweet potatoes are tender, add the coconut milk to the soup along with the fish sauce and brown sugar. Stir, taste, and add more fish sauce and or brown sugar to taste. Finally, add in the bok choy greens and spinach and let them wilt in the hot soup a minute or two.

TO SERVE:

Divide the rice noodles between four bowls. Ladle the soup and vegetables over the noodles. Put vegetable garnishes in small bowls so everyone can top their soup with onions, cilantro, a squeeze of lime and a drizzle or more of Sriracha sauce.